Best said by Kristy Stevens on Amazon. This review is absolutely correct:
"the team of people contributing to this book clearly did not hold the Bible to be literally true. For instance, it is suggested that the Israelites crossed through a "marshy swamp" rather than miraculously through a sea (although the illustration shows them walking through the parted sea), and I was outraged at the "explanation" that manna may have been sweet liquid which seeps from the hammada shrub. (Really? Feeding thousands of people for 40 years with sap? This just ignores the clear description the Bible gives of what manna looked like.) There were many little details like these that I found heretical and could seriously undermine a child's faith in what the Bible says.
Another real danger in paraphrased, abbreviated sections of the Bible in books like these is that any biases held by the authors and editors are included in the text as they "retell" the stories.
For instance, we are told that God rejected Cain's offering because it was not the best of his produce - as we have discussed in the past, we just don't know that for sure. In addition, God's conversation with Cain in Genesis 3:7 is phrased as, "Why are you angry?... you will succeed if you work hard; and if you do not, the sin will be yours." This completely changes the issue. The problem was not that Cain wasn't working hard!
In the story of Abraham and Isaac on Mount Moriah, the angel stops Abraham and says, "You have proved your perfect love of God by your willingness to sacrifice even your child." Again, as we have discussed, that is NOT the point.
Where the author and editors' biases are most apparent, however, are in the life and parables of Jesus. In a two-page summary of Jesus' life and ministry, the text reads, "The death of Jesus is important to Christians because they believe that, in dying, he was showing God's love for all people. For this reason the cross became the main symbol of Christianity. Christians believe, however, that death did not put an end to Jesus, but that his spirit lives on, especially through his followers." (207) Notice the complete lack of mention of sin, need for forgiveness, etc - and how His bodily resurrection is ignored!
Each parable begins with an "explanation," which often misses the point and emphasize "good living." For example - Lazarus and the rich man was "a story to warn people about God's judgment of the selfish." The Pharisee who prayed in public for show and the Tax Collector who humbly beseeched God for mercy in private were "to show how important it is not to be conceited or to look down on others."
Published 3 months ago by dee